How to Check and Repair Your Credit Report Before Buying

A total of 65% of complaints about credit reporting companies are related to incorrect information, says a study by the U.S. Public Interest Research Group, a non-profit consumer and public issues watchdog organization. A total of 9,000 consumers complained about their credit reports, meaning around 6,000 consumers found errors on their reports. The survey also revealed that:

  • Only one of the three credit reporting agencies responded to the majority of complaints against it. Equifax responded to 63% of complaints while Transunion and Experian responded to far fewer.
  • Consumers disputed the companies’ responses to about 18% of all complaints.

Obtaining a Report

You can request credit reports from each bureau (Equifax, Transunion, Experian), or receive an easy-to-read consolidated 3-in-1 report, including your FICO Score, from online services like Although you are entitled by law to a copy of your credit report for free, you may be charged to obtain it. Look the reports over and make sure you check every error. Usually, they are marked with a symbol or a letter.

Correcting Errors

Inaccuracies in credit reports can dramatically affect your credit score. The result could be credit denial or much higher interest rates. After you obtain a free copy of your credit report, correct any errors by trying these two methods.

1. Try a service like Lexington Law Firm. Let them straighten the information out. You can search for other credit repair firms, too.
2. Research and dispute the inaccurate information on your own by calling and writing to the credit bureaus. Be patient if you try this method.

In Sum

Many consumers don’t expect errors on their reports. In reality, though, they are still very common. Exhibit due diligence to avoid paying money you don’t deserve to pay. Other ways to ensure you don’t waste money are to get online quotes from every local dealer and shop banks for loans. Good luck!

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